The Schedule

There is no event for 2017


Registration will take place at Blues Point Reserve, North Sydney. Only the first paddlers in the relay teams need to come to Blues Point Reserve to register. Other paddlers can complete registration at their respective Transition Area (please allow enough time to do so).

Registration will be by boat number. We will send out your boat number closer to the event date.

Bring-Your-Own Kayak

At registration you will need to sign the indemnity form sign-in sheet (please read the indemnity form beforehand, to save time on the day).

You will receive a numbered bib which must be worn on top of all clothing/PFD. You must return your bib at the end of the event. Any unreturned bib will attract a replacement fee of $50.

You will also receive a sticker with your boat number to stick on your boat.

Your race number will also be recorded on your left arm/calf with a marker.

You must then go through scrutineering to determine/confirm what category your craft will be part of.

All paddlers must wear a Type II Personal Flotation Device (PFD) or life jacket at all times while on the water.

Teams Challenge

At registration the people paddling the first leg of the event will need to sign the indemnity form sign-in sheet (please read the indemnity form prior to this to save time on the day). Team members paddling other legs will be required to sign the indemnity form sign-in sheet at the transition area at the start of each leg.


Any last minute team changes can also be notified at registration or at the start of the relevant leg. To expedite the registration process though, we ask you to please update your team’s details online as much as possible at least one week prior to the event.

At the Start registration (at Blues Point Reserve), participants in the Teams Challenge will receive a numbered bib for each of the members in the first leg. These bib numbers must be worn over the top of all clothing /PFD. You will need to change over your bib numbers whenever you change paddlers at a transition area.  You must return your bibs to the finish at the end of the event. Any unreturned bib will attract a replacement fee of $50.

For Teams Challenge entries you will also be issued with a 2 or 3-person kayak as well as up to three PFDs (personal flotation devices) and up to three paddles. Your team is responsible for any issued equipment during the event and all items must be returned at the finish of the event. Any non-returned equipment will be charged to your team captain. Any member of the team may choose to use their own PFD and/or paddle. Teams Challenge participants must use the kayaks provided. All paddlers must wear a PFD.

Transition Area (TA) Procedure

Bring-Your-Own Kayak and Teams of 3 in 3 Seater Kayaks

Bring-Your-Own Kayak participants (ie. singles and doubles) and teams of 3 in 3 seater kayaks (NOT SWAPPING PADDLERS) need to ensure they call out their race number and that their race number is checked off by race officials as they pass through each transition area. Bring-Your-Own Kayak paddlers and Teams of 3 in 3 seater kayaks must pass between the shore and the buoy at the transition area, but do not need to get out of their boat. Make sure an official has checked your race number off.

Relay Teams of 3 -8 and 4-12

At the transition areas, team members swapping over must first check-in with officials and sign the indemnity form sign-in sheet. Teams must bring their boat to shore and change over within the designated area.  Bib numbers, PFDs and paddles must be passed onto the new paddlers.

Maps of the Transition Areas can be found on The Course page.

Transition Areas will open at the following times:

Transition AreaRegistration opensFirst teams arrive
TA1 - Little Sirius Cove, Mosman Bay8:30AM9:30AM
TA2 - Clifton Gardens, Chowder Bay9:00AM10:00AM
TA3 - Balmoral Beach (Southern end)9:30AM10:20AM

Please note that the Spit Bridge will be open for boats (and thus temporarily closed to car traffic) at 8.30AM, 10AM and 11.30AM

Estimated Paddling Times

The table below gives an estimate of the time between each Transition Area.

Boat TypeStart TimeArrival at TA1Arrival at TA2Arrival at TA3Arrival at Finish
Event provided 3 person boat (fast)9:009:3110:0610:4011:10
Event provided 3 person boat (slow)9:009:5610:5811:5912:52
Touring boat or canoe (fast)9:259:5010:1810:4511:09
Touring boat or canoe (slow)9:2510:1211.0511.5712.42
Single sea kayak or surf ski (fast)9.259:4610.0910.3210.52
Single sea kayak or surf ski (slow)9.2510.0110.4111.2011.54
Double sea kayak or surf ski (fast)9.259.419.5910.1710.33
Double sea kayak or surf ski (slow)9.259.5610.3111.0511.35

Finish Procedure

The finish line will be at Clifton Gardens. You will leave your kayak (and the AROC paddles for the Teams Challengers) on the grass and run/walk through the finish arch in the reserve. Your finish time will be recorded at this point.

Team Challengers must then return their bib numbers and PFDs as instructed by the event officials. Bring-Your-Own Kayak paddlers can leave their boats in the secured kayak area until they are ready to load them onto their car. They must return their bib numbers into the appropriate bins.

Everyone can then pick up their race goodies and help themselves to the complimentary BBQ, fruit and drink for participants and families. There will be activities at the Event hub, including a jumping castle, face painters, wandering clowns, ‘Fresh for Kids’ fruit costumed characters, a musician and more, so stick around to greet fellow participants and wait for the award presentation!

Dogs on a leash are allowed at the finish area at Clifton Gardens so bring the whole family. But please note that dogs are not permitted on the beach area.


Lifestart Kayak for Kids is a paddling event open to anyone, whether they are experienced paddlers or complete beginners, whether they are adults or children. We want the experience to be as enjoyable as possible and hence the safety of participants is paramount.

The kayaks provided for the Teams Challenge are ToyBoy Voyager II and III kayaks that are very sturdy and almost impossible to overturn. It is highly unlikely that a participant would fall out of one of these kayaks, provided they were paddling responsibly. Even if a participant did fall out, their provided personal flotation device would keep them afloat for the short time it would take for the other paddlers in the boat to provide assistance.

The entire Kayak for Kids course is monitored by a water safety network to cover any potential hazard on the course. This network is made up of organizations such as Manly Kayak Centre, Manly Sailability, Manly 16ft Sailing Club, paddlers from PaddleNSW, the Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association, the Royal Volunteer Coastal Patrol and Surf Life Saving Clubs. These volunteers monitor the course in a range of motorized craft and kayaks.

The goal of this safety network is to monitor the progress of the race which also includes indicating the direction for paddlers to follow and keep them away from potentially hazardous points if the weather conditions require it. Finally, they will warn paddlers of other boat traffic, especially ferries and other large vessels. Organisers are also in contact with NSW Maritime Authority and will monitor the safety conditions on the Harbour leading up to the event and on the day.

Tips for the Event Day

1. Bring drinking water or electrolytes to rehydrate while paddling to prevent heat exhaustion and dehydration.

2. Protect yourself from the sun: wear a hat, sun glasses and sunscreen. The sun is reflected on the water surface and potentially more dangerous than on the beach!

3. If you are prone to rashes -especially under the arms from the paddling motion-, bring some Vaseline or Body Glide along with you to prevent chaffing.

4. Wearing gloves can help prevent blisters if you are prone to them.

5. Wear clothes and shoes that can be wet: even if you don’t go in the water, spraying will happen! Leave your valuables with someone on shore, or make sure they are protected in waterproof bags (dry bags) or double Zip-Locks.

6. To minimise muscle pains, stretch before and after you paddle: your back will thank you for it!

7. Train, train, train: it’s not enough to be fit! Paddling uses very specific muscle groups that are seldom used in day-to-day life. The best way to train is to go out there and paddle! Do it in the morning before work as a workout, or make a family outing of it on weekends! Check out the training section for details about boat hire and training groups.